Cystic Fibrosis 2 Essay, Research Paper
Cystic Fibrosis is an inherited disease that is present at birth and is characterized by chronic lung infections and the inability to absorb fats and other nutrients from food. When Cystic Fibrosis was first identified in the 1930’s, it claimed the lives of almost all of its victoms. Now with medical technology, over two-thirds of “CF” patients live well into their adult life, however few of them are in perfect health. Cystic Fibrosis, remains however, a serious and potientally fatial disorder. Sickel Cell Anemia ia an inherated blood disease that occurs primarily in blacks and less commonly found in individulas of Mediterranean origin. In Sickel Cell Anemia, the red blood cells are abnormal, resulting in a chronic, very sever form of Anemia (reduced oxygen carring compacity of the blood). Cloning sometimes has a mixture of sex prefrence and medical reasons when diseases are more present in one sex. Duchennes Muscular Dystrophy, Hemophillia, and Fragil “X” syndrom, for example, all occure more in males. Hemophillia, for example, effects one male in every 10,000. It is an inherited blood disorder caused by a defiency of a particular blood protein. Hemophilicacs suffer recurrent bleeding, most often in their joints. Bleeding may occur spontaneously and/or after injury. Hemophiliacs also have been compounded by the very high incidence of AIDS among their numbers, as a direct result of treatment of their condition. In pratice the main application of genitic engineering has been to mass produce a varity of substances – all proteens of various sorts – to have uses in the medical diagnosis and treatment. The function of any gene is to control the production of a particular protein in a living cell. If the gene responsible for synthesing a useful protein can be identified, and if such a gene can be inserted into another cell that can be made to produce rapidily, then a colony of cells containing that gene will be grown. The colony will then produce the protein in large amounts. Cloning has been used to produce some human hormones (notably insulin), some proteins for vaccines, and interferon, a substance with the potential to treat viral infections. Other valuable aids to treatment are also genitacially engineered, Factor VIII (a protein used to treat Hemophilia) and TPA ( a substance that dussolves blood clots). If genitic engineering can be used for so many purposes, and has the capability to save so many lives, then it should be eagerly welcomed. Some however are still skeptical:
“Many science and medical discoveries endorse some human freedom or trancended narure. But for us to change substantially the germ-lined DNA is to directly alter the genitics of a human. In what ways do we, by manipulating our genes in other than simple ways, change ourselves to something less than human? If we accept this power do we have the wisom to use it?… (World Council of Churches, 1992)
This is a common question amoung many people. Skeptics feel that the human mind cannot possibly control such an awesome responsibility. Nobody really knows if it can, but cloning is becoming more and more popular. It is becoming more and more common and the perplexity of its potential is no longer being recongnized. People who favor cloning have no idea of the potiential disaster that it could cause, and people who are aganist the idea have no idea of what good it could do, or how many lives it could save. Hopefully people will realize the power and responsibility that comes with cloning before its too late. Another controversy surronding genetic engineering is that of ethics. The biblical view of genitic engineering is seen as this:
“From Auschwitz to Hiroshima to love canal humanity has been decisively demonstrated that its technological powers overwhelm its capacties for moral judgment. The genetic engineering of human life, if allowed to proceed, will quickly trespass any well intentioned boundries and guidelines” (Manipulating Life, pg. 48)
This view is shared by many. Again and again over the past decade, science has declaired, “Look what we can do,” and the defenders of morals and ethics have answered, ” Yes, but maybe you shouldn’t”. It has happened over birth control, organ transplant, test-tube babies, surrogate mothers, mind altering medications, and now this genitic engineering. Much to the dismay of many people their fights usually follow this pattern:
Most people who are against cloning feel that it is a process of simply nominating somebody to play god. This is a topic that fights a constant battle with sucide, and this is not what scientist want the idea of cloning to turn into. Unfortunately for them, the idea of cloning defies many peoples long standing ideas of morals and ethics. Many feel that everyone of these breakthroughs in genitic engineering will be of benifit someone, under some circumstances, somewhere in society. Step by step , advance by advance, human beings might well choose to trande away spontaneity of natural life for the predictablity of technological design. People fear that ultimately, we will be formed into a product of our own creation. A creation in which bears no longer resemble bears and trees no longer resemble trees. Just because something can be done is no longer adequate justification for assuming that it should be done or that it cannot be stopped from being done. As humans we have a scred oblication to say no when the pursuit of a specific technological path threatens the very existence of life.
The new technology of cloning, or genitic engineering, raises a realm of ethical, legal, medical ,social and philosophical questions that force us as people to revaluate our true value of human life. Programming genetic traits into human sex cells subjects the human species to the art of technical manipulation and design. With the arrival of genetic engineering, humanity approaches a crossroad of its own technological history. It will soon be possible to engineer and produce human beings by the same technoligacal design principles as we now employ in our industrail process. Cloning can give a couple the little boy or girl that they dreamed of, and it can also result in the death by abortion of an innocent victim merely because of its gender. Cloning can prevent people fom disease and help those who have them, however, with one simple mistake, it can creat an incurable deformity. In many cultures it is the answer for couples who wish to have the preferred males, in others it is considered playing god, a moral sin. The wholsale of human life raises a fundimental question, presented by Nobil Laureate biologist, Dr. Salvador Lauria when he questions, “When does a repaired or manufactured man stop being a man… and become a robot, an object, and industrial product?” (Manipulating Life, pg 12).